Natural Cure for Powdery Mildew: Garlic Spray to Keep it at Bay.

What is summer without humidity?  So, by the end of July, the old “white stuff” starts creeping up on the cucumbers and squash leaves.  Then one by one, they start turning yellow.  I am surprised you don’t hear my loud *sign* when I see my squash and cucumbers dying.  I look up to the sky and say “why me?”

Anna, didn’t you just battle the squash vine borer?  Indeed, I did.  But no one said gardening was easy, nor did they say it doesn’t come without challenges.

But how many challenges can a green girl handle?

I have to admit.  I am a little burnt out this summer.  Rain, heat, rain, squash borers, raccoons, rabbits and repeat and rinse.  Did anyone say an early frost is coming?

Curing Powdery Mildew

So, how do you cure powdery mildew?  Or at least keep it at bay from your new growth? I got out of my  fetal position and decide to help my lame cucumber leaves.  The zucchini was starting to look even worse.

The powdery mildew enemy, Serenade has been my friend in the past.  However, the lady behind the counter told me to make my own garlic sprays since sulphur has been used to manage powdery mildew for centuries.

2 garlic cloves versus shelling out money for a product.  Hmm.   Which one would you pick?  So, I got busy.

Luckily I grow garlic (so easy by the way) and took two bulbs from the pantry.

The Recipe

2 Garlic Bulbs–NOT cloves

2 Cups of Water

1 Tablespoon of Liquid Dishwashing Soap.  (Please use an earth friendly product. Your plants don’t need the nasty chemicals in ordinary dishwashing soaps.)

1 Gallon jug


1.  Grind the garlic bulbs with 2 cups of water.

2.  Run the mix through an unbleached cheesecloth or coffee filter.  (Forget the bleached products.  Who needs extra possible dose of dioxins on their plants?)

3.  Add 1/4 cup of the liquid mixture to a gallon jug.

4.  Add the liquid dishwashing soap

5.   Store the garlic mixture in a container in the refrigerator.

You can even freeze the mixture for the next season.  I have at least 9 beds to spray so I went through most of the mixture pretty quickly.

I spray every week at dusk or dark.  (It can be really eerie to spray your plants when it is pitch dark outside…I jumped every time I heard a strange sound.)


The new leaves aren’t infected.  The old ones aren’t to get better.  I will be taking those leaves off the plants and removing them from  the garden.  Do not compost these leaves.

Join the Conversation:

  • What do you use to prevent powdery mildew on our plants
  • What do you use when powdery mildew invades your garden?

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